The New Times (Kigali)

4 January 2013

Rwandair Registers Record High Passenger Turnout

Photo: Rwanda Tourism
Gorilla.

National carrier RwandAir has registered a record-high passenger turn-out during the festive season, projecting optimism for the country's growing aviation sector in the year 2013.

Indeed, this year, the national carrier increased its fleet and added more destinations, which experts say boosted the country's service sector through reduced passenger and cargo fares.

The Chief Executive Officer for RwandAir, Mr. John Mirenge, said this was a new record that the aviation company is proud of.

"We know that we are a fast growing airline, nevertheless we are happy to have set this new record," he told Business Times yesterday.

The airline says it set a new record number of 2,205 passengers per day, travelling through its hub at Kigali International Airport, with this busy period expected to continue up to mid-January, when most people have returned from their holidays.

"Ever more, passengers experience the quality of our services, our brand new aircraft and our affordable fares," he added.

The airline carried 1,964 passengers, only to be surpassed the day after, grossing up to 40 percent more passengers in 2012 compared to previous year-2011.

"To those still looking for a possibility to fly away for a holiday or to spend some days with their loved ones, attractive fares are still available," Mirenge said.

Indeed, this year, the national carrier increased its fleet and added more destinations, which experts say boosted the country's service sector through reduced passenger and cargo fares.

"We've seen a big increase on our longer-range routes such as to Johannesburg and Dubai," RwandAir Commercial Director, Bert van der Stege, said

He added: "Regional destinations such as Entebbe (Uganda) and Nairobi (Kenya) are also doing very well. We're happy to bring people together, in time for the festive season."

Accordingly, the year 2012 has not been good for the aviation sector with International Air Transport Association early in January last year predicting that airlines will continue to see declines in revenues generating profits of only $ 3.5 billion (Frw2.2 trillion), a decline from an estimated $ 6.9 billion (Frw 4.5 trillion) in 2011.

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